BY ADRIAN P. NEMES III
Losses in the livestock and rice industries in Negros Occidental due to Tropical Storm Dante had reached P5 million, as of yesterday.
Of the number, P4.5 million was incurred by the rice sector with the destruction of 890 hectares of rice fields, Provincial Agriculturist Japhet Masculino said.
Masculino said 143 farmers from the cities of Victorias and Cadiz in the north, and the towns of Hinobaan, Pontevedra, and Moises Padilla in the south were affected.
In his report to Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson, Masculino said that Moises Padilla logged the highest recorded losses at P888,704.
The OPA has no data yet as to losses in fisheries, high-value crops, and corn.
Meanwhile, livestock losses amounted to P564,868, due to deaths of farm animals, Provincial Veterinarian Renante Decena, said yesterday.
Decena said 13 barangays in the municipalities of EB Magalona, San Enrique, Binalbagan, and Hinobaan, and in La Carlota City were also affected.
He said Hinobaan has the highest recorded devastation in livestock at P352,956. Decena added that among the farm animals that have either drowned or died due to hypothermia or prolonged exposure to very cold temperature are swine, pekin ducks, cattle, carabaos, game fowl and free range chickens.*